I believe щ is pronounced like the sh-sound in "shoes" and ш is pronounced like the sh-sound in "shrimp" or "shop". Be aware of how you place your tongue when pronouncing the words, in "shoes" (щ) your tongue is closer to your teeth and in "shrimp" (ш) your tongue glides further back in your mouth. I hope this helps!
Because they just said "I - Woman" "Я - женщина", they didn't mention one woman in specific, so it is incorrect to say "the woman". To say "I am the woman", it's : Я Это женщина. Since they didn't say anything before "woman", they're talking about any woman (or a woman).
I'm stumped that I'm lost that I don't know where to go to work on pronunciation. My brain is wrapping itself around the Cyrillic backward capital R sounding like a Y and an H sounding like an N, and all I want to do is have a better foundation on pronouncing the sounds behind the new letters of this different alphabet, but I don't see any hints or tips where to go to to look for answers.
I would say to pronounce each letter in the word, make sure you are familiar with the russian alphabet. The best way to get a good pronunciation is to speak with a native speaker, so if possible I would try to speak with natives. If you are not able to then you can go online and listen to native speakers talking and try to repeat after them
TTS stands for Text-to-Speech. This is what a voice synthesizer is technically called.
Nowadays very few "voice synthesizers" on the market actually synthesize voice. The most common way to make a commercial Text-to-Speech engine is to record dozens of hours of a voice talent's spech and then extract many pieces of of voice from there. Effectively, you use a large database of phonemes and allophones, which (in theory) covers all possible sounds found in the words of the language read in any environment with any intonation.
- in reality some combinations of sounds are fairly rare. The texts recorded for building a TTS are carefully designed to cover even the rarest sounds. Still, a language naturally uses some sounds way more often that others, so you need thousands of sentences to get a good coverage of less common sounds in different environments.
Another way is to use HMM (hidden markov models) to "teach" the engine how to synthesize sounds using hours and hours of recording as a role model. It usually ends up being more monotone and robotic (though, less prone to "broken tape recorder" effect), so few synths for sale use it. The free engine RH Voice uses such method.
Because it hasn't been taught yet?
Plus, Wiktionary at https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/%D1%8F%D0%B2%D0%BB%D1%8F%D1%82%D1%8C%D1%81%D1%8F#Russian indicates that this is a third meaning, so somewhat low on the list of likely meanings.
Plus, it takes instrumental, which I don't think has been taught yet, either.
It is perhaps more likely to be related to Ancient Greek "γυνή", which is at the root of English words such as "gynaecology".
For more details, including the word's various pronunciations, take a look at: https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/%CE%B3%CF%85%CE%BD%CE%AE